INTRODUCTION: Contestants skidded off to a slippery start in the Silver Jubilee Safari rally from Nairobi, Kenya on Thursday (7 April).
INTRODUCTION: Contestants skidded off to a slippery start in the Silver Jubilee Safari rally from Nairobi, Kenya on Thursday (7 April). A heavy downpour gave the drivers of the 67 cars a taste of what's coming to them in what could be one of the toughest and wettest rallies ever. It covers over 6,000 kilometres (3750 miles) of dirt track in the bush and mountains of Kenya, and flash floods one-and-a-half metres deep (five feet) have hit the northern section of the route.
SYNOPSIS: Seven of the original 76 entries failed to report for Wednesday's (6 April) final official check. But Kenya's two Singh brothers were well on time. Joginder Singh, the elder brother, is favourite for a record fourth safari victory with co-driver David Doig. They won last year. Younger brother Davinder Singh, also driving a works Colt Lancer, is a noted local driver and came eighth in the 1975 rally. Other strongly fancied teams include the Italian pair, Sandro Munari and Piero Sodano in a Lancia, and the Finns Hannu Mikkola and Arne Hertz, driving a works Peugeot. Mikkola won in 1972, the first overseas driver to take first place.
Britons Andrew Cowan and Paul White, driving another Colt Lancer, have also been strongly backed to win.
The British Ford Escort 1800 of the Swedish team, Bjorn Waldegaard and Hans Thorszelius, was scheduled to be first away from the starting point on Thursday (7 April). Here they make a practise start for the hazardous, and longest-ever route ahead.